The Dreamiest Dresses at Paris Haute Couture Week

The Dreamiest Dresses at Paris Haute Couture Week
Intro Deck: 

See all the action from the Spring 2018 Haute Couture shows in Paris

Haute couture fashion exists in its own universe, elevated above concerns like budget and mass-market wearability. It’s a display of design for fashion’s sake, where couturiers conjure beauty through complex and labour-intensive technical achievement. Most of these dreamy gowns are tirelessly stitched and beaded in Parisian ateliers, although fashion house Ralph & Russo prides itself on its Mayfair roots and the father of couture is British (here’s looking at you Charles Frederick Worth).

But, if you find yourself lacking the occasion or budget for these quite literally priceless creations — (you’re not a princess or a Hollywood starlet? Shame) — then maybe you’ll join us in the best kind of escapism, a chance to get lost in a froth of silk, sequin, and chiffon.

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With a Paris Haute Couture lineup that includes the most legendary names in fashion—Elie Saab, Schiaparelli, and Chanel, just to name a few—there is certainly no shortage of covetable dresses. At Schiaparelli, we saw crystal encrusted gauzy gowns float down the runway, while Giambattista Valli brought us a scene out of the natural world, with feminine floaty gowns inspired by a wild Irish garden.

In a week that typically embraces all things fantasy, LVMH group’s two new female creative directors brought us collections that felt timely and clearly relevant. Maria Grazia Chiuri’s showing for Dior and Claire Waight Keller’s outing for Givenchy forged conscious links to the current wave of female empowerment, #metoo and Hollywood’s Time’s Up movement.

At Dior, Chiuri delved into the house’s history to draw inspiration from the feminist artist Leonor Fini, an early colleague of Christian Dior. Optical illusions and hand-painted surrealist patterns were rendered in a monochrome palette and worked into striking silhouettes that left us awed. For Givenchy, Keller married the powerful with the graceful to serve us the essence of a modern woman. The collection similarly featured a mostly monochromatic palette and bridged strong tailoring with feminine silhouettes in fabrics like lace and feathers. Stylists lining the catwalk and taking notes for their A-list clients now surely have a plethora of all-black ensembles to draw from for awards season.

With the Paris Haute Couture Spring Summer 2018 season in full swing, take a look below at the dresses of our wildest dreams.

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